Workers using glovebox (radioactive compounds)

Workers using glovebox (radioactive compounds)

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Caption: Workers using a glovebox to handle radioactive plutonium compounds at a processing plant at Los Alamos National Laboratory, New Mexico, USA. Plutonium (atomic number 94, symbol Pu) is almost exlusively a man-made substance, although a minute quantity of its major isotope, Pu-239, is formed by the decay of uranium, the heaviest naturally- occurring element. Pu-239 undergoes nuclear fission (splitting) into smaller nuclei, a process that is accompanied by a vast release of energy. Hence its use as an explosive in atomic bombs and as a fuel in nuclear reactors. Plutonium is highly toxic and a potent carcinogen (cancer-forming agent), even in minute quantities.

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Keywords: energy, glovebox, handle, handling, handling of, industry, plutonium, processing, radioactive, radioactivity, technology

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